There are aid stations along the race course approximately every 2 miles or so where you can get water, etc. I did the Ascent for the first time last year and used a Camelbak with a bladder for water. I ran out of water in the bladder but fortunately had an empty water bottle that I used for the rest of the way, filling it at the aid stations. This year I am going to use a fanny pack for rain gear and food and a hand held water bottle for water. One important thing I learned was that with a bottle you know how much water you're consuming with a bladder you don't. It really is personel a preference and what you feel comfortable with. Good Luck.